Legalization of euthanasia will be debated for the fifth time in recent years by a preliminary committee of the Colombian Senate. The country’s Constitutional Court ordered euthanasia decriminalized 11 years ago.
Senator Armando Benedetti, who proposed the bill, said the state cannot ignore the reality of a minority who wish to end their suffering from a grave or irreversible illness, reported television channel CM&.
“At no point do we want to apply euthanasia to patients in coma or to children. The patient must be fully aware,” he said.
Former senator Carlos Corsi Otalora said the project is driven by the interests of the multinational healthcare companies, who wish to regulate euthanasia because of the huge profits it offers.
“It’s the fifth time they’ve presented it. And again, we’re going to stop it,” he said.
Chairman of opposition party Democratic Pole, Carlos Gaviria, opined that fear has prevented the legalization of euthanasia since the Constitutional Court ordered it decriminalized 11 years ago, reported Carcol Radio.
“There was always some obstacle and fear of touching the subject, euthanasia can be applied at this time, what happens is that it would be highly desirable that the judge did not have to bear so much responsibility and be regulated by Congress in a more specific way the circumstances under which active euthanasia is legitimate,” he said.
The Colombian Catholic Church has long held that the practice of or the request for euthanasia brings spiritual sanctions.
“Anything that is openly against the principles of faith that is the Church leaves the communion of faith of the church, is what we call being in a state of sin,” said Monsignor Fabian Marulanda, secretary of the Episcopal conference.